UN puts latest natural disaster alerts at the click of a mouse

Emergency agencies around the world can now get the latest forecasts and alerts on drought, floods, tropical storms, locust infestation, El Niño, earthquakes and volcanic activity under a new humanitarian early warning service launched today by the United Nations and its partners.

UN official warns of 'enormous task' to prevent natural disasters

After a year of devastating natural disasters, from the earthquake in Bam, Iran, to the recent typhoons in the Philippines, the United Nations' most senior humanitarian official warned today that the world faces an "enormous task" in preventing and preparing for these emergencies while mitigating their after-effects on an increasingly vulnerable population.

General Assembly discusses UN humanitarian and disaster relief assistance

The General Assembly met today for a daylong discussion on strengthening the coordination of United Nations humanitarian and disaster relief assistance, with speakers stressing the importance of including the views of and working with local groups in developing emergency programmes in order to ensure their long-term success.

Rich nations can also suffer from natural disasters, says UN agency chief

The deadly typhoons and earthquakes that have recently struck Japan illustrates that even wealthy countries are vulnerable to natural hazards, the head of the United Nations disaster-reduction body said today.

UN agencies campaign to reduce death rates in natural disasters

Early warning about looming natural disasters and other advance planning could halve the rates of death and destruction they cause over the decade beginning in 2010 compared to the previous 10-year period, United Nations officials said today.

UN-developed board game for children helps them avoid risks during natural disasters

The United Nations has developed a new children's board game called Riskland which harnesses the power of fun to teach youngsters what to do in the event of a natural disaster.

Urban migration means natural disasters affecting many more people: UN official

At least 250 million people endured the effects of natural disasters last year - almost three times the amount of people in 1990 - prompting the head of the United Nations disaster-reduction body to warn this trend will worsen as more and more migrants move to high-risk urban areas because the economic opportunities are greater there.